Common Agenda

The Minnesota Collaborative Justice Project brings together diverse stakeholders to collectively serve the needs of some of the most vulnerable in our society by implementing an agreed-upon and measurable plan to address a persistent societal challenge – the successful reentry of individuals released from federal and state correctional facilities.

Reentry: 25% of adults released from prison in MN return to prison for a new felony conviction;
50% return for a technical violation.

OUR MISSION

To dramatically improve the experiences and outcomes of formerly incarcerated individuals in Minnesota
to enable them to lead full and productive lives in the community.

Geography

While the initiative aims to have impact across the state, recent data shows that the majority of reentry occurs in Hennepin and Ramsey Counties. As such, many of the initiative’s efforts, especially at the level of service provision, will be primarily there, impacting individuals who have been released from federal and/or state facilities.

Timeframe

Support is needed from the day confinement begins until many years after those formerly incarcerated are “off paper.” Initially, efforts will focus on the timeframe beginning 12 months before release and continuing to
5 years after.

Issues

The reentry population faces many issues and obstacles. Gaining housing and employment are prioritized as two key issues to support. Undergirding these issues are access to benefits (especially related to health), legal services, opportunities to build cognitive and non-cognitive skills, and the existence of a support system of mentors, family members, and people who can help navigate the complex reentry system.

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GOAL

To reduce the number of formerly incarcerated individuals who return to prison for a new offense or a technical violation within five years from the day they were released from federal or state prison.

STRUCTURE 

The initiative is led by Pro Bono Institute and an all-volunteer Steering Committee that includes representatives from corporations, law firms, government agencies, and non-profit organizations as well as individuals who were formally incarcerated.

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FOCUS

To achieve our goal, the initiative has identified several inter-related topic areas to focus its efforts, and has formed working groups to develop and implement collaborative action plans.